Friday Flashback – The Skyway

The Skyway - a bygone attraction from a bygone age at Disney...

The Skyway – a bygone attraction from a bygone age at Disney…

You know, to be honest with you all — and with myself, I might add — the early visits to Walt Disney World when I was a kid all those years ago are somewhat a fuzzy memory to me.  For example, in my first trip, when I was 11 years old, I remember the feelings I experienced more than the attractions I rode.  However, there is something from those early visits that I really do remember quite well, and today, I’m going to talk about it in Friday Flashback.  That attraction is the old Skyway attraction.

For those that are younger than I and don’t know what the Skyway was, I’ll tell you.  The Skyway was a special one-way transportation attraction that would take you from Fantasyland to Tomorrowland — or from Tomorrowland to Fantasyland.  When you rode to either destination, you couldn’t continue back without getting back in line for a second trip.  The Skyway was a suspended gondola type ride, where you were lifted into the air and suspended from a steel cable as your car was taken from one part of the Magic Kingdom to another.  It was a whole level of freedom that you just didn’t get any other way, because you were able to look at the Magic Kingdom from a whole different dimension than you would normally get, and I LOVED the Skyway.

At it’s least, the Skyway was a nice, relaxing way to journey to another part of the park without tiring your feet any more than they already were.  At it’s best, the Skyway was a way of seeing parts of the Magic Kingdom you never see anymore — a way to be above it all and reflect on the beauty of the park, how blessed you are to be able to experience it — and if you are a kid like I was — perhaps a way to tell your parents or grandparents thanks for taking you there!

The Skyway was an original opening day attraction at the Magic Kingdom, and had identical rides at Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland.  The Magic Kingdom version of the Skyway attraction lasted the longest, being open until November 5, 1999 — over 28 years!  Now, for your enjoyment, here’s a YouTube video of the attraction for you to enjoy!

Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide – Buzz Lightyear

Buzz Lightyear

 

It’s Buzz Lightyear to the rescue!  In our next Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide post, we’re looking at the shoot-em-up adventure located over on Tomorrowland’s main strip.  Here are the parameters for this attraction:

Attraction Name: Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
Attraction Type: Slow Rides, Spinning
Height Requirements: None
Location: Tomorrowland
Hours of Operation: All Day
FastPass+: Available

From my experience, usually this attraction does not need a FastPass selection as the line isn’t usually that long, but FastPass is offered, so if you have one to burn, take advantage of it.  The queue for this is fun, but not interactive, unless you count Buzz as interactive, as he does talk and move around.  You are signing up to be a cadet to help Buzz fight the evil Emperor Zurg, and to do so, you will be in your specially designed spacecraft that spins so you can shoot all around you.  For each target you hit, you’ll get points, and the higher your score, the better!

What is your high score on the game, or the high score of your kids?  At the end, your score will help you determine what rank you achieve — my all time high score is 999,999, which, coincidentally, is the highest that the game will count to.  Now, I’m not ace at flying and shooting to achieve that score — the ride stopped moving, but I was still able to shoot, and the points kept going up and up and up!  So, definitely put an * next to that score for the record books, but it was fun anyway!

Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide – Astro Orbiter

Astro Orbiter

 

In our Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide series, we’ve covered Main Street, U.S.A. and Fantasyland, and now we’re switching our attention to the futuristic land, Tomorrowland.  It is purely by coincidence that we are looking at this land today, the day that the Tomorrowland movie is released, but it is very appropriate nonetheless.  Astro Orbiter is first in our list, here are the details for this ride that is nearly out of this world:

Attraction Name: Astro Orbiter
Attraction Type: Slow Rides, Spinning
Height Requirements: None
Location: Tomorrowland
Hours of Operation: All Day
FastPass+: Not Available

I like this attraction, but it does have some drawbacks, so I thought I would share the pros and cons for this attraction with you:

Pros:

  • It is situated above the Tomorrowland Transit Authority, so you can get some good views of the park because of the height.
  • It isn’t so fast that you are going to make yourself sick, and you can get good pictures because the speed isn’t so great that your camera can’t focus.

Cons:

  • Being so high up, you get to the attraction by elevator, and the loading process is very slow, which leads to long waits.
  • The rockets are not very big, so for people like myself, it’s a tight fit.
  • The ride doesn’t last very long, so it seems like a long wait for little reward.

While I do like the attraction, it isn’t my favorite, and I’ll gladly choose the TTA over the Astro Orbiter any day, and twice on Sunday!  Do you and your family like the Astro Orbiter?  Let me know in the comments, and thanks!

Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide – Under the Sea

Under The Sea

As we continue our Magic Kingdom Attraction Series, we turn our attention to the Fantasyland attraction Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid.  This is another attraction that was developed as part of the Fantasyland Expansion.  The attraction is identical to the attraction of the same name over at Disney’s California Adventure, except for the huge difference in the queue, and that gives the Magic Kingdom version the nod over the California Adventure version in my opinion.  Here are the details for this fun attraction:

Attraction Name: Under the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid
Attraction TypeSlow Ride
Height Requirements: Any Height
Location: Fantasyland
Hours of Operation: All Day
FastPass+: Available
Interactive Queue: No

For those that like the Finding Nemo pavilion over at Epcot, you’ll see a big similarity between the two types of ride vehicles for the attraction, as you will board a Clamshell for your journey into the world of Ariel, Prince Eric, and all the rest of the classic Disney movie.  After the attraction, you’ll be able to stop by and visit with Ariel herself for pictures and autographs!

This is a fun attraction, and I think your whole family will enjoy it, but especially any Princesses in your family that love Ariel!

Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide – Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

As we continue our Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide series, today we are taking a look at one of the last, if not the last, part of the Fantasyland Expansion to open.  Today we are sharing the details on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train with you!

Attraction Name: Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
Attraction Type: Thrill Ride, Small Drops
Height Requirements: 38″ or Taller
Location: Fantasyland
Hours of Operation: All Day
FastPass+: Available
Interactive Queue: No

Without a doubt, the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is the best part of the Fantasyland Expansion for me.  This coaster is a great attraction, and the Imagineers have gone all out in their attention to detail and theming to be found throughout the attraction.  With FastPass+ service available, this is one of those “must do” attractions that, if you don’t ride, you will probably regret having not done so.

Have you been able to ride the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train attraction yet?  If so, what did you think of it?  Among my favorite parts is singing along with the Dwarfs as they go off to work, and also making the car swing as much as possible through the curves!  Thanks for stopping by, tell me what you think of the attraction in the comments, and have a great day!